August 1, 2012

Lavender Cupcakes with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting

Our lavender plant is taking over the front of our house. I know I trimmed it back last fall, but that thing is growing like a monster. I've cut quite a bit of lavender and have yet to make a dent in that plant.

I wanted to actually do something with the lavender this year, so I decided to try incorporating it into cupcakes. A word of warning, though, that lavender is one of those things that you should consult with your doctor with before consumption if you are pregnant or nursing. Once you get the green light, bake these for a uniquely delicious treat. (These cupcakes were quite popular with my coworkers, despite being a new flavor for many of them.) I adapted the recipe slightly from Jessie's Kitchen Chronicles.

Lavender Cupcakes with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting  
1/2 cup of butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. red and 1/2 tsp. blue food coloring
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 cup fresh lavender buds
2/3 cup cold milk
1/2 cup  unsalted butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsp. fresh lavender buds

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cupcake tins with 12 cupcake liners. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the softened butter and sugar together. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each egg. Stir in the vanilla and food coloring.

In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir the lavender into the flour mixture.

Alternately add the flour and milk to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.

Scoop batter evenly into lined muffin tins. Bake for 18 to 24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Let cupcakes cool in the tins for 5 minutes, and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

To prepare the frosting, beat the butter and cream cheese together. Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing on low, until the frosting is smooth and creamy. Beat in the vanilla extract and honey. Stir in the lavender. Frost cupcakes as desired. (Note, this recipe makes a lot of frosting, so half the recipe unless you like a thick layer of frosting.) Makes 12 cupcakes.

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